Reviews tagging Murder

The Box in the Woods, by Maureen Johnson

62 reviews

cherry__tomatoes's review

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adventurous challenging emotional funny mysterious fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Plot
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

4.5

Honestly I didn’t know where this book would go, I felt like it would fall flat after the series. I felt like it wouldn’t hold up to the previous books but honeslty  this is probably my second favourite book in the series, first one being the vanishing stair. I felt like we really saw more into who Stevie was, whereas with the first three books we really saw her as this crime obsessed kid. It was nice to see the author dive more into Stevie’s anxiety problems, and as a kid with anxiety I could totally relate. I loved the little small town “Hallmark” vibe of the book. I loved how we learned more about Stevie’s triggers for her anxiety, and I love that she FINALLY got a love interest. I felt like her ending up with David was the perfect ending. Overall, I did feel like the mystery was sort of an afterthought as we really only see a progression in the solving of the case after around page 250.I didn’t mind this however because of how enthralled I was by Stevie’s personal life and her problems. I felt like the ending of the case was very satisfying. ABSOLUTELY LOVE THE PLOT TWIST. And I felt like Stevie finally relaxing and finally admitting her true love to David was an amazing ending. I hope that their will be another book with these amazing characters in it. (Maybe David was hinting at something at the end, I’d love to see Stevie solve some “real life” murder mysteries.) 

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spacexgay's review against another edition

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adventurous dark emotional mysterious fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Plot
  • Strong character development? No
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

4.75


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ibeforem's review against another edition

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mysterious
  • Plot- or character-driven? Plot
  • Strong character development? No
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes

4.0

This is the fourth book in the Truly Devious series, but as far as the mystery goes, it's a standalone.

Life has moved on for Stevie and her friends since she solved the Ellingham mystery and has gone home for the summer. It looks like she has a long boring summer of working at the grocery deli ahead of her when she gets an email from Carson, the owner of a summer camp in Massachusetts. 40 years before, 4 camp counselors were murdered in the woods, and the case is still unsolved. Carson wants to bring Stevie in to work at the camp but also to work on a podcast with him where they try to solve the case themselves. With nothing better to lure her to say no, Stevie agrees, as long as her friends Janelle and Nate can come with her.

So now we basically have the Adventures of Stevie, Janelle, and Nate at Camp, with cameo appearances by David. Stevie is very interested in the case, but quickly finds out that working on a case where the people affected are still alive and hurting is much different than working on one where all the people directly involved are dead.

I did enjoy this, but we're sold all of this stuff about the podcast in the beginning and then there's very little work that's actually done on it, other than Stevie's investigating. In fact, the guy who brings her there plays very little part in the story as a whole. But it was still entertaining, and the core group of characters is still as strong as ever (I'm still on the fence about David). I look forward to seeing where she brings them next. 

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shirazj's review against another edition

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adventurous funny mysterious medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Plot

4.0


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dilani's review

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dark mysterious tense medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? It's complicated
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

3.75

It gave what it was supposed to be giving…but at the same time it didn’t. I love Stevie and her friends, especially Nate. I was ecstatic to see more of him. Although the mystery Stevie was solving kept me reading, it felt like something was missing from the overall book. Maybe I didn’t feel as excited as I did when I first read Truly Devious? Still a solid book and I would love to see where Stevie goes from here.  

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yelibertcruz's review against another edition

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adventurous dark funny informative mysterious tense medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Plot
  • Strong character development? No
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

4.75


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meganelise's review against another edition

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adventurous dark mysterious medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

4.5


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thebakerbookworm's review against another edition

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adventurous mysterious fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Plot
  • Strong character development? No
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

4.0

While the mystery in this book wasn't as good as the one in the original trilogy, I still really enjoyed this return of Stevie and friends. The same quirky friendships, funny and cute banter, and quest for the truth made it an enjoyable read.

The focus is definitely more plot heavy in this one though—it makes for a quick read, but there wasn't really a ton of development for our characters. I wanted David to be present for more of the story. I love the friendships that Stevie has with Nate and Janelle and those got more focus than her relationship with David, I thought. The new characters were interesting, though I don't think any would stick around for a new story (if there are ever more books about Stevie, which I would definitely still read). 

I didn't guess the mystery and I liked how it all came together at the end. The story feels very fast though; I don't know if that was a good thing or not. By the end, I realized that not even a week had gone by. But I supposed such is the way with many mystery books.

This book didn't spoil anything much from the original trilogy, so I don't think you have to read the trilogy before reading this one. But I would recommend reading the trilogy first, as you'll understand the characters a lot better—they get more development and complexity in those books.

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princesspegasus7e13e's review against another edition

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mysterious
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes

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francesturpin's review against another edition

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adventurous funny mysterious fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? No
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

4.0


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